Biography of Dancers Isadora Duncan Part 3

About the American dancer Isadora Duncan, her biography and history.


Isadora Duncan (1878-1927).

A grieving Isadora left Singer and tried to seek relief in travel--at times contemplating suicide. While in Italy, she had an affair with a young sculptor. In an attempt to bring back her remembered joy of motherhood, she became pregnant. The child died shortly after birth. With the tragic loss of her 3 children and the emptiness of her love affairs, Isadora became totally immersed in her dancing.

In 1921, following several more love affairs, and performances and voyages all over the world--Switzerland, Greece, Paris, South America, Cuba, and North Africa--Isadora went to Russia with the intent of opening another school. The Bolsheviks had promised her support. After much red tape and many delays, Isadora found a large house and selected 50 girls as her new students. The aid promised her by the Government never materialized, and she was once again in debt.

Isadora was determined to succeed--both in her school and in her newest love affair. Her paramour was the young Russian poet Serge Essenin. Isadora was 42 years old; Essenin was 15 years younger. Essenin spoke not a word of English, and Isadora not a word of Russian. Although Isadora did not believe in marriage, she married Essenin. Perhaps it was simply for immigration purposes--to bring her new lover to the U.S. for her scheduled tour there. At any rate, their passionate relationship turned out to be stormy. His temper, frequent drunkenness, and jealousy of her notoriety--and her jealousy of his romantic wanderings--led to their eventual breakup.

In December, 1925, while in Paris, Isadora received a telegram telling her that Essenin had committed suicide. No longer was Isadora's dancing that of the joyous free spirit. Her personal tragedies now led her into dances of despair.

Nearing her 50th birthday, she went to visit friends in Nice. She was attracted by the young Italian sent to demonstrate a car she was interested in buying. During the ride the trailing end of the long, red-fringed scarf she had wrapped around her neck caught in the spokes of the rear wheel of the sports car. Her neck was broken and she died instantly--as tragic in death as in life.

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